Prior to purchasing a forklift truck, you should make certain that it is properly inspected and given a test run. This applies especially to trucks being obtained on-line. It is very essential to detect potential issues with trucks obtained from businesses on the Internet.
Be certain to start the engine from cold, and note the ease with which the engine turns over and whether there is excessive smoke. This is specifically crucial with IC engine trucks.
Testing the performance of the truck in challenging situations must be included in the test run. A trained driver can operate the truck in forward and reverse, up the ramp.
You can inspect an IC engine truck yourself. On a clear area of floor, run the truck around for a few minutes while a trained operator tests the hydraulic functions. Then, look at the ground underneath for indications of fluid leakage. Even seemingly minor leaking can lead to serious problems which will be very expensive to fix later on.
The chains and masts must be inspected by a qualified individual. Check with and without a load that the mast works smoothly. Watch for sticking or 'binding' of the mast. A warning indication is play in the mast channels or between the mast and fork carriage. One more is creeping forward or creeping down of the mast when loaded. These can be signs of problems with ram, valve or seals.
If the truck is used, the mast might have been changed at some time. Make certain that the mast and any fitted attachments follow the rating plate on a truck. Make certain that the sideshift is not sticking when loaded.
Looking closely at the thickness of the heel for wear or damage must be included in the inspection. The truck's manufacturer specifies minimum thickness. A loose fit could mean the hanger points or carriage are worn. Watch for cracks on the arms at mountings and heels.